Many of us have known for some time that Jane Hamsher is battling recurrent breast cancer. She's been writing about it on Firedoglake.
I have no doubt that the indignities Jane is enduring are identical to those of tens of millions of Americans who believed if they became ill, their private, for-profit insurance would protect them from financial ruin.
What you're about to see will shock you. It's a chilling and graphic reminder of what an patient in the United States faces.
Please note that despite being insured by Blue Cross of California, Jane owes $15,684.94, and I'll bet this is just the tip of the iceberg.
Looking at this bill which is known as the "explanation of benefits" frightens me and it should scare the shit out of you too.
But think for a moment about dear Jane. Imagine receiving this while battling cancer.
Jane is not alone, this Murder By Spreadsheet assault is going on in homes across the length and breadth of our nation.
Now you know about Jane. Jane Hamsher is the face of of but one facet of our American healthcare catastrophe. Jane insurance.
You might also want to know how hospitals, doctors, the entire healthcare industry in the United States plan on dealing with the medical debt and medical collections crisis which is coming at all of us like a runaway freight train.
I'm convinced that as for-profit insurance becomes more and more worthless--higher deductibles, cost shifting onto your shoulders and mine, the proliferation of high deductible junk insurance, skyrocketing premiums, etc. etc. there's going to be an explosion of medical debt and medical receivables.
I believe this wave of medical debt is going to hit the United States like a tsunami, so I've started to research what may happen.
MedAssist is a venture-backed firm controlled by Lake Forest, Ill.-based private equity firm RoundTable Healthcare Partners. It provides outsourced revenue-cycle-management services for companies in the health care industry. It also provides eligibility, receivable-management and collections services. MedAssist has more than 1,400 employees.
I'm in the early stages of looking at this, but I believe the reason this transaction occurred, and many others will likely follow, is because there is an expectation that medical debt will become an immense issue in the near future and cost efficient collection will become a huge necessity and a booming business.
What a tragedy and disgrace. Why is the United States the only
civilized industrialized country that considers healthcare a for-profit business?
Why is Dennis Kucinich the only Democratic presidential candidate supporting HR 676? Why are all the others demanding that the American people re-board the Titanic?